tv U.S. House of Representatives Legislative Business CSPAN April 19, 2016 4:00pm-6:01pm EDT
the paris agreement is already work, setting the foundation for an historic reduction in greenhouse gases and paving the way to a thrive, clean, global economy. here at home it's also about creating new jobs and empowering the private sector to harness that uniquely american brand on american innovation in the global marketplace. we may celebrate it once a year but every day is earth day. that's a promise as important today as it was 46 years ago and 46 years later, we are making evert day, every day with the paris climate agreement. with that i thank you, madam speaker and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. for what purpose buzz the gentlewoman from california seek recognition? without objection the gentlewoman is recognized. >> thank you, madam speaker. madam speaker, i rise today to talk about family.
yesterday the supreme court heard oral arguments on daca and dapa and i challenge anyone to look at the children protesting in front of the supreme court yesterday and not feel an urgency to protect them and their families. ms. sanchez: our unjust and broken immigration system has forced millions of families to live in the shadows. where is our compassion? immigrants, regardless of legal status, they deserve justice and dignity. we're a nation of immigrants, uniting and keeping our families together in an integral american value. we should be protecting the stability of hardworking immigrant families instead of tearing them apart. comprehensive immigration reform is the moral imperative of our time and i urge this congressle
to pass it. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields. for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland seek recognition? without objection the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. this coming friday, april 22, is earth day, as you heard. i had the pleasure this morning to be at the cove in baltimore, this is the first national wildlife urban refuge that was established in the country. mr. sarbanes: i was there with a class of young people, high school students from benjamin franklin high school who are learning science in the classroom but then they're taking that knowledge outdoors, connecting to nature. i'm very excited that recently when we passed the new re-authorization of the federal education act, we embedded in it environmental education which is now going to allow nonprofits, local school districts and others to apply for competitive grant funding in the u.s.
department of education to support environmental education and outdoor activities across this country. the excitement these young people had today shows that our planet is in good hands. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the gentleman from michigan, mr. conyers is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader. mr. conyers: thank you, madam speaker. ask unanimous consent for all members to be given five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous material on the subject of this special order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. conyers: and i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. conyers: i rise today to implore the senate to fulfill its responsibility and give fair
consideration to president obama's nomination of judge her -- merit garland to the supreme court. in this tenure on -- honorable body, i have witness nod comparable example of partisan politics and complete obstructionism with respect to consideration of a supreme court nominee. i introduced h.res. 661 together with my democratic colleagues on the house judiciary committee, and this resolution called on the senate to hold hearings and an up or down vote on the president's nomination of judge garland. the senate's majority flat out refusal to consider president obama's nominee regardless of
the nominee's qualifications is historically unprecedented and is part of a long-standing pattern of disrespect shown to this administration in particular. our constitution relies on a system of checks and balances. yet the senate majority's continued stonewalling of the president's nominee threatens to throw the system into imbalance. the president, of course is the constitutional authority -- has the constitutional authority and only fwation to appoint justices to the supreme court, pursuant to article 2, section 2, and he has fulfilled this duty with his nomination of judge garland. and the senate has both the authority and the duty to provide advice and consent on the president's nominee.
yet, the senate has thus far refused to doits job, which is simply unacceptable. it is clear that the constitution requires that both the president and the senate fulfill their respective roles in the supreme court nomination process in order for the supreme court to be able to fully perform its constitutional role. otherwise, what's to stop the senate from simply granting the court a co-equal branch -- branch of government, i remind you, to a halt, by simply refusing to consider any nominees to fill any vacancies on the court? there is no merit to the argument that we have to wait until we elect a new president. after all, the american people twice elected president obama to fulfill the duties of president,
including the duty to appoint supreme court justices. a strong and independent judiciary is a prerequisite for a strong democracy. and this remains as true in the last year of a presidency as it is in the first. moreover, there is ample precedent for presidents nominating and the senate confirming supreme court nominees in a presidential election year. for example, 1988, during the last full year of ronald reagan's presidency, the democratic controlled senate confirmed the nomination of justice anthony kennedy by president reagan by a vote of 97-0. today, there are nine months left in president obama's term.
the president has nominated an imminently qualified jurist in judge garland and the senate has more than enough time to consider and vote on his nomination. it is vital that the supreme court have a full complement of justices so that the critical constitutional and legal questions before the court can be given the full attention they need. ready we've seen a number of 4-4 decisions that have left much uncertainty in place for he lower courts. the litigants and americans generally. the senate should do its job. comply with regular order. hold hearings on jge garland's nomination. and then have an up or down vote on the nomination.
and now it's with great pleasure that i turn to the distinguished hoyer, for five minutes. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i thank him for his distinguished service. madam speaker, i want to begin by expressing my appreciation to the ranking member of the judiciary committee for leading today's special order. on the important issue of the vacancy on the supreme court and the senate republicans' unprecedented, unprecedented obstruction of the president's nominee. that nominee, of course is judge merit fwarled of the u.s. circuit court of appeals for the district of columbia. he is one of the most highly qualified nominees ever.
let me repeat that. he is one of the most highly qualified nominees ever to be put forward far seat on the nation's highest court. he's a respected former prosecutor and is well regarded as an appellate judge. he was confirmed to his present position in 1997 by a vote of 76-23. a majority of republicans voting in favor. mr. speaker, madam speaker, in fact, notwithstanding the opposition of some republicans, they articulated, in particular, mr. grass lee, now chairman of the judiciary committee, that judge garland was eminently qualified and would be good for an appointment to another court but that he was not for expanding the circuit court of the district of columbia. and it was for that reason alone he voted against mr. garland. mr. speaker, madam speaker,
today is the 21st anniversary of the oklahoma city bombing. judge garland as deputy assistant attorney general in the clinton administration oversaw the successful investigation into the bombing and the prosecution of its perpetrator. his insistence on traveling to see the remains of the murrah building in the days after the attack and his hands on attack to the investigation and prosecution won him praise across the political spectrum. the constitution is clear. the president has a responsibility to nominate justices to the court. and the senate has the ability to advise and consent. but it also has the responsibility to provide its advice and consent with regard to these nominees. it can, of course, reject a nominee. and it can advise and consent to the appointment of a nominee.
but the senate has chosen to do neither. it has chosen to do nothing. it has chosen to perpetrate gridlock in the supreme court of the united states. president obama met his responsibilities. now the senate must do the same. it needs to do its work. senate republicans can't just pick and choose when to do their job. last month, we saw the real life consequences of an eight-member supreme court. as it split 4-4 in a key case concerning the right of the teachers to organize and collect union dues. now, madam speaker, i was pleased with that particular outcome because the lower court had ruled in a way that i thought was appropriate. it is an example, however, of a case too important to be the result of a default to the lower court. because of a split bench. in cases like these, the court
cannot set a precedent, the american people, however, deserve a court operating at full strength so that it can establish precedent. we cannot wait until after the election to vote on judge garland's nomination. senate republicans, madam speaker, continue to insist that somehow, their obstruction is based in precedent. that a nomination ought not to be made in the final year of the president's term. ranking member conyers, former chairman of the judiciary committee, just spoke today. nowhere in our constitution is the president's authority limited by the number of days or months remaining in his or her term. the president is the president. from january 20 until january 20 four years later. this is yet another example of congressional republicans holding this particular president to a different and
unfair standard. the senate confirmed justice anthony kennedy, as has been said, in the final year of president reagan's second term. 13 other justices have been confirmed during presidential lection years, including louis grandeis and benjamin cardoza, two of the great member os they have supreme court of the united states. during the kennedy confirmation process in 1988, president ronald reagan said this, quote, the federal judiciary is too important to be made a political football. i would hope the senate republicans who often cite president reagan as a guide for the kind of leader they want to be would heed his admonition. some have had the political courage to rejeck their colleague's disrespectful approach of refusing even to meet with judge garland. i congratulate them. they are doing their job.
not only should all members of the senate give him the courtesy of a meeting, they ought to do their jobs as well and not stand in the way of the hearing. and consideration. the senate's duty to advise and consent certainly, certainly, madam speaker, was not envisioned by the founders to be optional. or that the senate could effectively pocket veto a nomination to the court. the senate ought to do its job. i don't think a single founder would have conceived of the possibility of the court receiving a nomination pursuant to the president's constitutional responsibility and authority, and simply say, too bad, mr. president. too bad, supreme court. we're not going to consider that founding father
would have conceived that to be possible and they therefore didn't provide for a time limit which a time -- for which a consideration could occur. i suggest, madam speaker, that if we meet our oath to the constitution of the united states, to uphold the laws of the united states, that it is incumbent upon us to ensure that the supreme court of the united states is fully manned so that it can in fact assure the faithful execution and adherence to the laws and constitution of this country. and i am now pleased to yield back to my colleague from michigan, mr. conyers, and thank him for leading this special order tonight on a subject of profound consequence to all americans. mr. conyers: i want to thank the gentleman for his incredible yield s, and i would now
five minutes -- i will now yield to the gentlelady from california, ms. sanchez. ms. sanchez: thank you. thank you, mr. ranking member, mr. chairman, of course. mr. speaker, i'd like to express my concern about the ongoing vacancy in the supreme court. the president has done his constitutional job and that is to nominate, to screen and to choose and to nominate and to put forward a name. and the senate must do its constitutional duty. it should take a look at the nominee and give a vote. i don't know how the senate would vote depending on the nominee. it is in their jurisdiction.
it is in their individual right to take a look and to decide nay, but y, -- yea or it is their responsibility to take up that nominee. that is the constitutional requirement. it has dire consequences for us when this vacancy is left unfilled. it has dire consequences for many. in particular, for example, the latino community. just yesterday, the supreme court heard oral arguments on u.s. v. texas, a challenge to the president's executive actions on immigration. because of the vacancy, we only have three justices, so there's the clear possibility that it could be a 4-4 vote and that would leave in place the freeze on daca and dapa and millions of immigrants' lives are hanging in
the balance. the supreme court must be able to make concrete decisions on the most pressing issues facing our country, but we are stuck in limbo, and actually if you think of the division of powers, we are purposely, in a way, hampering the power of that judiciary. it doesn't have to be that way. president obama has nominated judge garland, a worthy and a just successor to the late scalia's seat. yes, senate republicans refuse to give judge garland their consideration even though a majority of senate republicans voted to confirm this exact same judge to the d.c. circuit court of appeals in 1996, 1997. they refused to consider his nomination. why? because they are looking to block any supreme court nominee
at any cost. there's too much at stake to leaf the supreme court vacancy -- leave the supreme court vacancy open. it's time for the senate to fulfill their constitutional duty by filling the supreme ourt vacancy with undue delay. wasting time playing political games with the highest of the court, it's irresponsible and it's unacceptable and yield back the balance of my time. thank you. mr. conyers: i thank the gentlelady, and i am now pleased to recognize a distinguished member of the judiciary cicilline of rhode island, for three minutes. mr. cicilline: i thank the gentleman from michigan for yielding and for his leadership on this special order hour. madam speaker, five weeks ago president obama fulfilled his constitutional responsibility and nominated judge merrick
garland to the supreme court. judge garland is qualified for this position, and in 1997 he was confirmed to the united states court of appeals in the district of columbia with a majority of both parties supporting his nomination. he oversaw the prgs of timothy mcveigh -- prosecution of timothy mcveigh for the oklahoma city bombing. orrin hatch said he would be a consensus nominee and there would be no question he would be confirmed in the senate. now one month after president obama nominated judge garland to the supreme court, the senate are unwilling to give him an up or down vote. president ronald reagan said the federal judiciary is too important to be made a political football but that's exactly what senate republicans are doing. they're denying the american people a fully functioning supreme court and choosing to turn the federal judiciary into a political football. the supreme court was designated
by the founders of our country to make major decisions of law and to protect the rights of all americans, but the supreme court can't function as it was designed without a full slate of nine justices. the constitution makes clear the president's job is to nominate justices of the supreme court and the senate's job is to advise and consent on those a number nations. the president has done -- nominations. the president has done his job. the senate said they won't do their job for the remainder of the year. this is the most consequential example of republican obstruction. the american people deserve more from their elected officials. leader mcconnell, members of the senate republican caucus, do your job and consider judge garland's nomination as swiftly as possible. the american people deserve nothing less. with that i yield back. mr. conyers: i thank the gentleman and, madam speaker, i
would now be very pleased to recognize the gentleman from illinois, mr. foster, for three minutes. ostfost -- mr. foster: madam speaker, i'd like to thank the gentleman from maryland for coordinating this discussion and thank the ranking member for yielding. madam speaker, a supreme court sitting with only eight justices, including the chief justice, is not good for democracy. the failure by the senate to consider our president's nominee and because of the electoral cycle is an advocation of constitutional responsibility that is without precedent and without reason. now, i am best known to my colleagues as the last ph.d. scientist in congress or perhaps as a businessman who founded a company with his brother that now manufacturers most of the theater lighting equipment in the united states. what is less well-known is that
i am also the son of a civil rights lawyer who watch most of the language of the civil rights act of 1964. he stepped away his career in science to become a civil rights lawyer. there was a decade between the supreme court decision of brown v. board of education that held that racially segregated school systems were inherently unequal and the civil rights act of 1964. my father spent most of that decade traveling around the south advising school boards and judges on the nuts and bolts of school desegregation. then in august of 1969, president richard nixon nominated haynesworth to be an associate justice of the supreme court. the nomination was to replace justice fortis, a liberal from the new deal era and the confirmation would have shifted the balance of the courts significantly to the right. many liberal democrats were
strongly opposed to the nomination on ideological grounds, but my father knew judge hanesworth for his work on civil rights. he knew him to be an temmingt and fair-minded man. and so my father was called to telephone before the senate judiciary committee in support of the confirmation of haynesworth. my father, as a liberal democrat, would have decided otherwise. but he pointed out the decisions could be sustained by a reasonable man and could be sustained under precedent. in the closing of my father's testimony he said, the question for me is not whether i would have made another nominee for the supreme court. it is rather the question of whether judge haynesworth possesses the quality required to become a fine justice of the supreme court. this is a standard that should be employed by the senate today. the president alone has the
authority and the obligation to nominate a person to serve under the supreme court. the senate can defeat that nomination through a vote on the senate floor after hearings and thoughtful considerations of a person's judicial temperament and intelligent. i believe considering those characteristics makes it clear that judge merrick garland is imminently qualified to sit on the supreme court. but from the framers to my father to today, we have established frameworks for making those decisions. the supreme court should not be, as a famous president once said, a political football, and filling the bench is vitally important. so i urge my colleagues in the senate to give merrick garland hat liberal democrats gave haynesworth, a hearing and a vote. in 1969 finally the senate withhold its consent for the appointment of haynesworth three months after his nomination.
38 democrats and 17 republicans voted against him. i think that the process will make it clear how qualified merrick garland is and that he will be confirmed, but the senate must follow the process established in the constitution for reviewing a nominee. thank you and i yield back. mr. conyers: i thank the gentleman. i'm now pleased to recognize the ranking member on the intelligence committee, a former member of the house judiciary committee, the gentleman from california, mr. schiff, for four minutes. mr. schiff: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, last month president obama nominated a fantastic jurist, judge merrick garland, to the supreme court. seconds later, republicans announced that he would not receive a vote, a hearing or even a courtesy meeting in many
cases. judge garland has a sterling reputation as a brilliant centrist and above all fair jurist and has been praised by members of both parties in the past. he served in the criminal division of the department of justice before his nearly two decade-long career as a u.s. circuit court judge. garland is a harvard university and harvard law graduate. he clerked for a u.s. court of appeals judge and then for justice william brennan on the u.s. supreme court. during his stint with the department of justice he was dispatched in the aftermath of the oklahoma city bombing to help set up the prosecution team and help investigators build a case. and when garland was appointed to the u.s. court of appeals, he received a broad and bipartisan vote. there is no doubt that garland is superior -- superbly qualified. this nation's constitution expressly states that the president has the power to appoint supreme court justices with 2/3 of the senate
approving. nowhere is there some kind of an asterisk stating during their last year in office or even during the fast few weeks of their term that the president must relinquish this power to his successor. president obama was elected by the american public in 2012 to serve another four years in office. with nine months left in his term, there is no excuse for the senate to block him from filling this supreme court vacancy. precedent demands action. in the past, six supreme court nominees were confirmed by the senate in an election year, including current justice anthony kennedy who was then nominated by then president reagan, a republican president who was in his final year of his term, a democratic congress hoping that one of their own would replace him in the oval office. if that sounds familiar, it is, but instead of the partisan gridlock in the midst of a heated presidential campaign, in
1988, kennedy received a fair and lengthy hearing chaired by then senator joe biden and then received an overwhelming 97-0 bipartisan vote. the supreme court is a co-equal branch of government, not to be trifled with, not to be demeaned like some administrative backwater and certainly not to be made the partisan and political play thing of a senate g.o.p. leadership desperate to hold onto its majority at all costs. judge garland deserves a full and fair hearing before the senate to discuss his qualifications and judicial philosophy and he deserves an up or down vote on his nomination as soon as possible. to do otherwise would further politicize the judicial nomination process and departs from our constitutional system. thank you, mr. speaker, and i yield back. mr. conyers: thank you, sir. i'm pleased to recognize the gentlelady from california,
linda sanchez, for two minutes. ms. sanchez: thank you, mr. conyers, for your leadership and for organizing this special order to highlight the grave consequences of senate republican obstructionism by blocking a simple up or down vote on the nomination of judge merit garland to the supreme court. republicans claim to love the constitution, yet they refuse to acknowledge their constitutional duty. senate republicans have chosen to play politics instead of doing what's right for the american people. they simply don't want to do their job. president obama faithfully fulfilled his constitutional duty by nominating chief judge merrick garland to the supreme court but senate republicans refused to even hold a hearing to consider, to just consider, chief judge garland's nomination. this refusal to fulfill a constitutional duty of theirs to vet and vote on this nominee is
indicative of republicans' eight-year strategy of obstructing president obama at every opportunity. and who loses? the american people do. the worst excuse i've heard as to why senate republicans are shirking their duty is that the american people should have a say in the process. i'd like to remind my senate republican colleagues that the american people, including 11.2 million latinos who voted in the 2012 election cycle, already had a voice in this nomination. the american people expressed their will when they overwhelmingly re-elected president obama to a second full term. with the understanding that if a vacancy occurred, it's part of the president's duty to nominate a supreme court justice. i'd like to remind my republican colleagues, a full term, full presidential term is four years, not just three. i know math can be hard and a
little tricky so i wanted to make sure that my republican colleagues in the senate were clear on that. the vacancy before us is one that is critically important for all americans, but especially for latinos living in the united states. the president has fulfilled his obligation. now it's time for the republican senators to do their job. hank you and i yield back. mr. conyers: i thank the gentlelady. i'm pleased now to turn to the gentleman from arizona, in gallego, for four minutes. mr. gallego: mr. speaker, i rise today to call on senate republicans to give a full and fair hearing and vote to president obama's supreme court nominee, judge merrick garland. this is critical business -- there is critical business before the supreme court this term. our democracy relies on a full and functioning supreme court. it's been more than a month since president obama announced his nominee and republican
leadership has refused to move forward with the confirmation process. judge garland is an experienced and respected jurist with a long history of service to our nation. he has more experience than any other supreme court nominee in history. but republican senators have decided not to hold a hearing to confirm him. instead of doing their jobs, they are playing political game and leaving our highest court in limbo. since the 1980's, every person appointed to the supreme court has been given a hearing and vote within 100 day. there are 276 days before the next president takes office. plenty of time to consider judge garland's nomination. the constitution gives the president the response to believe the nominate justices to the supreme court and gives the senate the job of considering that nominee. there are no exceptions for election year. never before in american history has a senate majority said they
refuse to consider or vote on any -- on anyone nominated by the current president. we have never stopped considering supreme court nominees during election years. this is just the latest example of unconscionable republican obstructionism frfment shutting down the government to threatening to cause a catastrophic default, republicans have proven they don't know how to govern and don't have our nation's best interests in mind. republicans continue to put partisan politics ahead of the well being of the american people. nearly 60% of americans want the senate to healed hearings and vote on the nominee. they want and expect republican senators to do their jobs. justice scalia dedicated his life to the constitution. the senate should honor his service by honoring the constitutional responsibility to give his replacement a fair hearing and timely vote. thank you. mr. conyers: i thank the gentleman and turn now to recognize the gentleman from
texas, mr. castro, for two minutes. thank tro: thank you and you, mr. speaker. yesterday, i had the honor and privilege of sitting in the supreme court chamber while the case of u.s. vs. texas was argued. it's a case that many of us hope will affirm the president's executive action known as daca and dapa and allow for children brought here through no fault of their own as young kids to stay in the country and also for their parents, the parents of u.s. citizen children to also remain here so that families are not separated because of our laws. and i hope that the president prevailed and the administration prevailed and these families prevail in their argument when we find out in june or so what the supreme court decides. but as all of us sat there and
watched the argument, the elephant in the room is that there was one justice who was not there. instead of the supreme court being filled with nine justices, there were only eight. which leaves open the possibility in this case and many others that the court will be deadlocked 4-4. nd so not only on this issue where both sides, whether you're in favor of the administration's actions or against it, have a right to have the case decided and not be left in limbo, so on the issue of immigration in this term, on the issue of abortion, criminal law issues, jury selection issues these important constitutional questions, many of them could be left in limbo because the senate republicans refuse to even start to do their
job. the president has nominated somebody for the supreme court. the senate is supposed to take that nomination up, give the person a hearing and then take a vote. is it so much to ask that the senate take a vote on the nomination? they can vote no if they disagree with it but to at least take a vote. now, i say this in the context of the last few years in this congress, putting aside this term we're in right now, the last two terms of congress before this were the least productive terms in american history. measured by the number of bills sent to the president's desk. so what this represents is the fact that the cancer of gridlock is spreading from the congress to the judiciary. because senate republicans refuse not only to do their job
in their chamber but also to allow the supreme court to properly do its job. and so, mr. speaker, i urge the senate and senate republicans to do their job and to take a vote on the nomination of merrick fwarled. i yield back. -- garland. i yield back. mr. conyers: madam speaker, i'm now pleased to turn to the gentleman from washington, mr. heck, and to yield him five minutes. mr. heck: thank you, ranking member. thank you, madam speaker. please listen with me to the following timeless, universal, and wise words. trust that justice will be done in our courts without prejudice or partisanship is what in large part distinguished this country from others. for a judge to be worthy of such trust, he or she must be faithful to the constitution and to the statutes passed by the congress. he or she must put aside
personal views or preferences and follow the law, not make it. timeless and universally wise words. yes, those are the words of chief judge merrick fwarled. president obama fulfilled his constitutional responsibility by nominating chief judge garland, an imminently qualified american to the supreme court. he does indeed deserve and the american people deserve a fair hearing and and up or down vote. chief judge merrick garland has more federal judiciary experience than any other supreme court nominee in history. let me repeat that. he has more federal judicial experience than any other supreme court judge in history. this approach has earned him bipartisan praise throughout his career. as he was, as noted earlier, confirmed by a majority of both political parties.
senator hatch's words were referenced. here's what hasn't been referenced. none other than the chief justice of the supreme court, john roberts, said, any time judge fwarled disagree, you know -- judge garland disagrees, you know you're in a difficult area. i'm proud to be from and in this body representing a region in washington state. of course i'm not over in the senate. we here on the house floor don't get a vote, the nomination doesn't come here. but i'm proid to be represented by senator patty murray and maria cantwell who are prepared to move forward and do their job and vote. washingtonians should be proud of their leadership. if only the senate majority would also do their job and allow the senate to function, then we could ensure that the court is able to reach decisions that will produce the necessary precedent we need to resolve many matters going forward. you know, someday, i hope
someone from the 10th congressional district of washington state is nominated to the highest court in our land. and i fear, i fear a kid from tacoma known for resolving disputes on the playground or a teenager in olympia showing a talent for judging policy debates or a law student from shelton with their nose in administrative law textbook, i fear they are seeing all of this play out and thinking, why would i want to devote my career and life to the judicial process only to be denied consideration . om a stubborn senate but worst of all, with this inaction, the senate is basically erasing the line and they're creating a new level of gridlock. and as an american, i frankly, genuinely fear what this will become. every american should fear what this will mean in the future.
24 kind of obstructionism can become and will become a slippery slope and it will not bode well for our democracy. this is arbitrary and capricious. justice scalia died february 12. so there was not enough time left because there was just a year reft to go. same true in january. what about december? november? that's holiday season, hardly enough time. what about october? well, we're going holiday season? what about september? well we got to get the budget out? what about august, we're on recess. we're erasing the line. that's for the supreme court and where does it go next? does it go to all other judicial level appointments? does it go to all administrative agencies? we're erasing the line. it will not bode well for the rule of law. it will not bode well for justice. so i'm not in the business of giving advice to the members of the upper chamber. ever.
except today. do your job. hold a hearing. give it an up or down vote. were i there, yeah, i would vote to confirm chief judge garland but minimally, do your job. hold a hearing. and give it an up or down vote. and with that, madam speaker, i yield back the balance of my ime. mr. conyers: madam speaker, i'm pleased now to recognize the distinguished gentleman from new york, mr. tonko. mr. tonko: thank you and i thank e ranker of the jew kishyear -- of the judiciary committee or yielding.
this is a cry, an outspoken cry to please, fill the spot on the supreme court. i'm here no join my spirit and voice with my colleagues who are urging, requesting, our senate counterparts, the senate controlled by the republican party, needs to move forward on action taken by our president as he appointed, nominated a gentleman by the name of judge merrick garland to fill the vacancy on the supreme court. . and their recalcitrants seem to strike a theme here. obstructionism. the republican-led congress has embodied obstructionism over the last several years. we see it in public opinion surveys where that has reduced the positive side, the image of congress simply because we don't do our work when it's required
of us. where else in this country, where in any other job in this country can you say when asked to do your job? that's what's happening here. our republican-controlled senate is suggesting and indicating by action they will not move in fairness to address this nomination. we're not asking. my colleagues and i are not asking for a rubber stamping process here. we're asking simply that a fair hearing be given to the individual nominated by our president. president obama has looked at qualifications. he's checked performance. he's looked at integrity and has named an individual that has received great reviews on both sides of the aisle, both houses, but for some reason our colleagues in the other house, the republicans of the senate
will not allow for a fair hearing. that is saying no to your job. they embrace the constitution but seem to walk from it when it doesn't fit their agenda. what we have here, again, is an obstructionism perhaps of an historic dimension. this show of recal is i transis regrettable and it's iscceptable -- recalcitranse regrettable and unacceptable. 67 days is the average length of time from nomination to confirmation for a supreme court ominee since 1975. 67 days. in terms of 125 days, that xpresses the longest wait ever from nomination to confirmation
before that vote came. so 67 days and 125 days to make the case here. president obama nominated judge merrick garland 311 days before his term expires on january 20 of next year. . the math here is very plain it's a solid math here. 67 days and 125 days for doing business in the senate when it comes to addressing the highest court in the land. they've had 311 days to do their work. people say, well, the people need to decide. they want a president elected to come forth and then address this vacancy. well, the people did decide when they named president obama by
vote to his second term. we didn't elect. america didn't elect president obama for his second term to serve in 3/4 of a term. they elected him for a full four years. and so the arguments are weak if they're even arguments. do your job is the message we share today on this house floor to the other house and to the republican-controlled senate. do your job. there are much unfinished business in the united states -- in the highest court of the land. the supreme court has great unfinished business. to render that an eight-member body where they can be dead locked and virtual paralysis in the highest court of the land is unacceptable. let's do the business, the people's business. let's fill the vacancy on the supreme court. let's respect the constitution and let's understand that much
time was available, is available to get the work done here to confirm or to reject a nominee. simply do your job and offer the gentleman a fair hearing. with that i yield back, madam speaker. mr. conyers: i thank the gentleman, and i'd like now to recognize mr. sarbanes of maryland whose father honored us by serving on the judiciary committee when i was there. mr. sarbanes: thank you, mr. ranking member, for yielding. i appreciate the opportunity to speak on this important topic of filling the supreme court vacancy. mr. speaker -- madam speaker, many of the colleagues of ours in this chamber carry a pocket constitution. i've got one here myself to remind us of our duty to the country. article 2, section 2, clause 2,
the so-called appointments clause, is very clear. it says that the president shall nominate and by and with the advice and consent of the senate shall appoint ambassadors, other public ministers and consults, judges of the supreme court. it says shall, madam speaker. it doesn't say may, it doesn't say might. it says shall. yet, many of our senate colleagues on the republican side, the very same people who routinely will brandish the constitution as they speak to justify their actions, they're now ignoring the very plain text of the constitution. mitch mcconnell suggested that the president should not even have put forward a nominee for this vacancy on the supreme court. in other words, he suggested
that the president shouldn't do the job that the constitution clearly dictates he should do. well, the president decided he was going to do his job, and all we're asking is that the members of the senate do their job. if you look at the nominee, merrick garland, it's hard to imagine a person better qualified to be on the supreme court. nobody disputes the credentials of judge garland. an accomplished federal prosecutor, a former senior official at the department of justice, the current chief judge of the ever-important d.c. circuit court of appeals and someone who throughout his career has been praised by both democrats and republicans alike. so what's the problem here?
what's the holdup? why isn't this vacancy being filled? well, i think the republicans in the senate, they're just trying to run out the clock on president obama's term, and it's not just that they're denying the president the process that he's entitled to. they're denying the country. they're denying the country what the constitution says the country deserves which is a fully instituted supreme court with nine -- constituted supreme court with nine justices making important decisions. the supreme court of the united states cannot function as it is intended to unless it has nine members sitting on the court. it cannot find its way through new injuries prudence and new -- jurisprudence and new way of thinking unless it has a full
court. many look at this court and hope that many kinds of decisions we've seen over the last few years may be revisited with some new thinking. for example, the citizens united case, which has unleashed this tornado of outside money on this poll -- torrent of outside money on this politics which has left people without their own democracy. this has surrendered our political system to the wealthy and to the well-connected. the shelby county case, which gutted certain parts of the and enand ts act partisan operatives and state legislatures throughout the country to limit ways to access the ballot box. these are decisions which eventually will be revisited, and we don't know how merrick garland would come down on those
kinds of decisions. that's not the point. e're not prejudging. we're rethinking where that kind of jurisprudence would land. we're saying it's important if you have a fully constituted court to examine these questions and the american people have a right to expect that that will happen. when i came to this chamber 10 years ago, i remember early on there was a very tough vote, and i was going back and forth whether i should vote yes or i should vote no. and for a fleeting instance i thought -- instant i thought maybe i should vote present and i talked to a couple of my colleagues and they said -- they said the one reason you're here is to cast a vote. you can't just show up and be
present. you got to make a decision. and we're not asking members of the senate, republican members of the senate to vote for judge garland. we're just asking them to take a vote. we're asking them to hold a hearing, to meet the expectation of the constitution, have a hearing, put it to a vote and take a vote and let the chips fall where they may. you can't just show up and say i'm present. to do your job you got to show up and vote. that's what we do. we're legislators. we're not fixing potholes, we're not managing some brigade of soldiers. we're here to vote on legislation. we're here to vote on nominations. that's our job under the constitution. so you can't not vote and pretend that you're showing up for work. so madam speaker, i hope and i encourage and we beseach,
really, our colleagues on the senate side, give judge garland a fair hearing and then bring his nomination to a vote on the floor of the senate. that's what the constitution requires. that's what your job requires. nd with that i yield back. mr. conyers: madam speaker, i want to return the balance of any time that may be remaining, and i thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the entleman yields. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the gentleman from texas, mr. gohmert, is recognized for 60 minutes as designee of the majority leader.
mr. gohmert: thank you, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. gohmert: thank you. i am so grateful to my friends across the aisle for bringing up a subject that has bothered me for years, for years. having been a state district judge, i was bothered when people would be nominated for a federal bench and they wouldn't get their hearing or perhaps, like a gentleman named bork, a gentleman named clarence thomas. they got a hearing, but as
justice thomas properly stated back at the time, it wasn't so much a hearing as it was a high-tech lynching. but i'm sure all of us have our own personal stories that we're personally aware of. just happen to be one of 435 who have personal knowledge of personal friends, of people who were imminently qualified and were eventually confirmed. one of them was my law school colleague and we served in the same firm together for a few years, leonard e. davis. he was nominated in 1992 and, yes, as my friends across the aisle point out, it was the last of four years of the george h.w.
bush term, but there was no reason not to give him a hearing. the guy had been editor of the baylor law review. a brilliant guy. engineer by undergraduate training. and, madam speaker, madam speaker, the really unfortunate but not only did he not get a hearing in 1992, not only did the senate democrats drag their feet and refuse to he him a hearing for 1992, had to wait 10 years for a hearing to become a federal dge because the senate democrats refused to give him the hearing he deserved and the vote that he deserved. so, he was nominated in 1992 may 9 of , actually
2002, he was finally confirmed as a federal judge. now, another law school classmate, colleague, was with one of the best firms in houston. he and i entered law school at the same time. there's another justice now, we were all part of the same entering class at baylor law scool. and that was -- school. and that was andrew hanen. andrew hanen was nominated to the federal bench in 1992 by george h.w. bush as president. i didn't hear any of my colleagues that are now here, that were here in 1992, rushing here to the floor and saying, you know what, that leonard davis and that andrew hanen, they were at the top of their class, they're brilliant,
they're obviously well qualified, got the highest bar ratings anybody could get, everybody likes them, they ought to get their hearing and they ought to be confirmed. 1992 andrew hanen was nominated to the federal bench. and he finally got his hearing 2002, 10 l judge in years later. and he was finally confirmed on may 9, 2002. so i'm so pleased to hear my friends here in the house complaining about highly qualified, preeminent legal scholars not getting a hearing because i wasn't even a judge in 1992, but i was running for
judge in 1992 in texas, and i ew how grossly unfair it was to have the democrats in charge of the senate sit on those nominations and sit and sit. ow, in the case of brilliant , ylor lawyer priscilla owen she made the top grade on the state bar exam when it was taken. and i recall, i was sitting across the table from now justice owen, and when i got my grade i was thrilled. i made a great grade on the bar exam. and then people said, you were sitting right across the table from priscilla, she made the high grade on the bar, do you not even cheat at all? the answer is, no, i don't cheat.
i was thrilled with the grade i got. but priscilla made the top grade on the entire -- in the entire state on the bar exam. she had been a member of the texas supreme court, eminently qualified, obviously brilliant. and she was nominated to be a federal judge by george w. bush , first time, may 9 of 2001. after her hearing -- oh, wait. she was nominated may 9 of 2001 , and she never got a hearing n that nomination. he was nominated again september 4 of 2001.
she finally got a hearing july of 2002. she was eminently qualified. absolutely brilliant. according to the texas bar exam, she was the smartest lawyer taking the bar exam in month of that year we took the bar exam. it was only given three times a year. i think it may be given twice now. it was given three times a year. on our bar exam, she was the smartest lawyer in the room. i'd have to tip my hat as well as i did, she was a little smarter than i was. . art, able lawyer and justice she was year after
first nominated, in july of 002, she gets a hearing. three years later she was never given a vote. now, i was thrilled to hear from my colleague across the aisle that 67 days is the average wait from the nomination to confirmation since the 1970's. so, how is it when a brilliant man or woman is nominated by george h.w. bush or george w. bush, they run into this kind , wall from the democrats even when the republicans had the majority in the senate, they didn't have 60, and the democrats were able to hold up and prevent a vote on someone
as eminently qualified as priscilla owen. so, nominated in 2001. her 67 days were up. and she didn't have a hearing and didn't have a hearing for over a year. . d then years go by january of 2005 comes and goes nd she had gone an entire -- almost four years without the senate democrats giving her a chance to have a vote. nearly four years and they ouldn't give her a vote. so, february 14, right after george w. bush took the oath of , fice again for a second term
four years after her -- nearly four years after her first nomination, she was nominated again. nd she'd already had a hearing, she got -- finally got vote on -- in 2005. years and getting elected to a second term before they would even give priscilla -- priscilla owen the decency, just give her a vote. leonard davis, it took not only a son r of 1992, it took of that president that nominated leonard davis to renominate leonard davis before
he finally ever got a hearing and a confirmation vote. and what a lot of people don't derstand, if you're in a major law firm and you're nominated to the federal bench, it wreaks sluent havoc on the life -- absolute havoc on the life of the nominee. because not only do they fill out massive pages of application forms, but they thorough go an f.b.i. scrutiny that the senate gets, and then something that's not reported, but i know from having talked to these attorneys who were nominated for the federal bench and then were put on hold for years and years, when you're nominated
for federal bench and you're in a major firm, you've got tons of clients, they're coming to you with their business, you're bringing in lots of money for the firm and you're bringing home a great deal of money because you're very successful. because with your experience, people trust your experience. but the minute you get nominated to the federal bench, your life goes into chaos because the people at your firm are not going to send you over any cases that they need help on. clients are no longer going to come to you because they know you've been nominated for the federal bench, and so you're not getting the work anymore. your production falls off dramatically. who suffers then? you do. your family does. so when someone like andy hanen, andrew hanen, which nom was nom -- was nominated to the
bench, and it took so long to , it cost him a lot of money. it cost his firm a lot of money. and when priscilla, sitting on the texas supreme court, is nominated to the federal bench, and the senate democrats prevent her from getting a vote that she deserves for over four years, these are smart, whether they're democrats, republicans on the texas supreme court, they're smart people generally, every now and then a ringer gets on there, but most of them are very smart. and they know if you've been nominated to the federal bench, that you can go to the federal bench any day, you can go to the federal bench 67 days, according to my democratic colleague, after your nominated -- you're nominated.
so why would they have you write any major opinions when you could be at the appellate level, the fifth circuit court of appeals, before you ever have time to really dig in to the appellate case? so you go month after month, year after year without being allowed to preside and write a majority opinion on a specific case. they may get you one here or there that they think won't be a major effort to write, but it affects your life, it affects your state, it affects those you care about. so nobody is more thrilled than i am to have heard for nearly an hour my colleagues across the aisle saying, if somebody is nominated, they need to get a hearing and they need to get
a vote. now, brings us up to current time, with president obama hadn't been in office over seven -- having been in office over seven years now, and it's been rather interesting. but this administration has set a record. my staff cannot find any administration that tops this, but there have been 11 decisions in a four-year period by the united states supreme ourt where all nine judges unanimously said, the obama administration has vastly overreached what they were doing and they struck down the actions unanimously.
this court. four very liberal judges. and they 11 times in about four unanimously down effort after effort by this administration. in fact, it's apparently a a recorded -- a record that in four years this administration was struck down 23 times. they weren't all unanimous. they were before justice scalia's death. but to have your work as president, along with those under you, that you were ordering to do as you tell them, and to follow your policies and your guidelines, to be struck down 23 times in 2010 or s, that's like 2011 through 2014, is my nderstanding, so cases since
then, i'm sure we'll add to the record of the obama administration, perhaps now that justice scalia has passed it may enable the obama administration to get through these last months without racking up too many more overrulings by the supreme court, but but it tells you the mind set of this administration. we're going to violate the constitution and even the tremendously liberal judges on the supreme court, those four, even they come back and say, you know, 11 times, really, you have gone so far beyond what the constitution allows even for us liberals, you've gone way too far. we got to bring you in. you just can't keep pushing that far. so would it be a surprise when
an administration makes a in the last months, especially since the head of that administration as a senator basically supported the idea that you can't even make a nomination in the last year of your presidency. his vice president, when he was senator, senator joe biden, they were all for stopping any nomination in the last year of a president, so maybe when they were senators they prpt always wrong. -- they weren't always wrong. perhaps when they were saying it was a terrible idea for a president to make a nomination in the last year shouldn't even be given any consideration. maybe they like a broken clock is right twice a day. maybe it's one of those times. well, they were right on that
one, but i would not submit that that should always be the rule. i would not argue that as president obama and vice president biden were pushing that they shouldn't give a hearing to george w. bush's nominations in the last year, i wouldn't push that far but i ould submit that when an administration is setting cords for being the most unconstitutional administration n history, then perhaps in their case it merits slowing down a little bit before you allow them to contribute any more to unconstitutional actions. because those who studied modern history, going back to world war ii and pre-world war ii, we know that president franklin roosevelt didn't like the way the supreme court was ruling so
he was threatening to get the number added from nine to 15. he'd appointment six and he'd get them to do what he wanted. well, it had the desired effect upon the supreme court. they started ruling the things he wanted were not unconstitutional. this is also the democratic dministration that ordered the internment of people just because of what they looked like and where they were from. er done icans has ev that but franklin roosevelt did. 23 timesadministration having their actions struck down, 11 unanimous, that record,
perhaps it's an indication that we should hold up. our friend andrew mccarthy today pjmedia.com has an article and i want to read from part of that article. his title is "as primary campaigns roll on, obama shreds constitutional governance." two cases in point, he says, president obama's pressure on the states to drop sanctions against iran and his continuing scheme to dictate immigration law unilaterally. mr. mccarthy, who was the prosecutor that did a fabulous job in prosecuting the bombers of the first world trade center bombing from back in 1993 says this in his article.
the involumeable sarin, citing a bloomberg news report, alerts that the state department has sent moneytory letters to the governors of all 50 states suggesting they impose any sanctions against iran. over half the states have such sanctions targeting not only iran's nuclear work but the regime's other weapons work. e.g., ballistic missiles, terrorist promotions, human rights abuses, detentions of americans, etc. this explains mark of the foundation of defense of democracy's, quote, are an essential part of the nonnuclear sanctions architecture designed to both deter iranian illicit behavior and to safeguard pension funds from the risks associated with entering iran's economy.
alas, any counter iranian measure with reality is certain to fly in the face of president obama's iran deal. the joint comprehensive plan of action. mr. mccarthy points out the text of the jcpoa, the joint comprehensive plan of action, that's the iran treaty and it really was a treaty because you cannot amend a treaty the way this one amended prior treaties unless it's a treaty. the difference is the senate leadership couldn't work up the courage to bring it to the floor as the treaty it was so that a 2/3 vote would not be able to be reached and it would not be confirmed and it could have been stopped dead in its tracks if it had been brought to the floor. , this is such a powerful
important issue, unlike some that majority leader reid set aside, the cloture rule, to bring to the floor without a cloture vote. this is something that will affect and could bring about the end of millions of lives and that's the largest supporter of terrorism in the world getting their hands on $100 billion to $150 billion, and that's just the first year. they could get $100 billion a year after that. but also getting the green light to go ahead and move forward with the nuclear work that they're doing, and the administration may allow or help them to move along. as the clinton administration did for the north koreans. you may recall, madam speaker, the north koreans struck a deal
with wendy sherman who helped out on the iranian deal and president clinton -- and i know this is a shorthand rendition but basically in effect saying, hey, north korea, if you will just sign saying you won't use what we give you to develop nuclear weapons, we'll build you a nuclear power plant, we'll give you everything you need for nuclear weapons if you'll just sign saying we won't develop nuclear weapons and, of course, thinking people knew what would happen and it did happen just as thinking people knew it would you couldn't trust the leader of north korea. they took the materials that were provided for power plant and they developed nuclear weapons, and now this administration has to be constantly concerned about what north korea's doing because they have nuclear weapons and they anted to help iran all because
of the deal that wenty sherman helped do back d -- wendy sherman helped do back during the clinton administration and helped make happen with iran. so they're able to keep working as they thought, and then we in out more recently that just recent weeks that actually the department of justice and this president's administration, surely had to include the white house, they knew that iranians had hacked in to our system here and they were charged with hacking into the system but according to repeat reports, justice department was talked into holding up on the charges until after the iranian deal could be made -- it wasn't confirmed. it's not a legitimate treaty,
but at least squeaked through without the 2/3 of the senate being opposed, which is not what treaties -- the treatment treaties are supposed to get, according to the constitution, but that doesn't keep some folks from acting unconstitutionally. anyway, turns out the obama administration encouraged the justice department to sit on those charges. they knew iran had people hacking into our system. had to be government sanctions. you don't do that in iran without government permission. d this government knew about ballistic missile testing that violated all kinds of things but this administration knew and some of us said right here on this floor there will be violations and this administration will have to turn their head and act like they don't really see the violations because they twisted so many arms, did so many deals to try
to get the iran treaty treated as if it's a treaty without the confirmation that they could not afford for people to know how blatantly iran leaders were violating their agreements. this article from mr. mccarthy goes on, the text of the jcpoa expressly indullings iran's position -- indulges iran's position that it will, quote, cease performing its commitments, unquote, under the deal if it deems the sanctions to have been, quote, reinstated in whole or part. that threat should only relate to sanctions on iran's nuclear program, but as obama administration well knew, many of the sanctions against significant iranian entities, like the national iranian oil company, the bank of meli, are based on activities in addition to support for the nuclear
program. moreover, iran has publicly announced that it interprets the jcpoa, the iran treaty, we'll call it, as a sweeping eradication of sanctions related both to various nonnuclear activities, e.g., other weapons and ballistic missiles, and to sectors of its economy sanctioned beyond support of the nuclear program. against that backdrop, the jcpoa also purports to oblige the federal government to use, quote, all available authorities, unquote, in order to eliminate any, quote, law at the state or local level. that is preventing the implementation of sanctions lifting as specified in this jcpoa, unquote. well, that's amazing. the administration makes a deal that they're willing to sign a deal with iran that violates our own constitution. they have no right to dictate
laws to state and local authorities, but they apparently signed a deal with iran that they would dictate state and local law. this is a foreign relations matter. so why does the iran deal commit washington merely to encourage and otherwise try to persuade state and local officials to honor the deal's terms? because for all its bluster about domestic and international law, the administration knows this deal has no legal standing. plainly, the president is trying to muscle his way through the inconvenience that the jcpoa is merely an executive agreement. it's not a legal enforceable treaty, nor is it supported by any legislation that would bind the states. president obama's willing to work through sheer extra legal executive power.
well, the article goes on -- it's a good article. but then, again, when we look at thisecord setting slaps at administration's overreach and violation of the constitution, 11 unanimous decisions in four byrs or so, and 23 reversals the supreme court in such a short period of time, four, five years, these are records, have that many reversals in such a short time, that it bears great scrutiny when an administration setting records for violating the constitution says right before we go out we want to get this person onto the supreme court because we have other stuff that will be ruled on by the supreme court after we're gone and we want some of that stuff that may be
unconstitutional, like the 23 times the supreme court said they were, struck down, they want those upheld in the future. it seems like these are good reasons to -- for the senate to be very careful. much more so than they were about the iran treaty. . here's an article. iran's open door immigration policy blamed for gam gang crime. -- gang crime. this is maryland, this isn't texas, it's not arizona. a rural maryland sheriff on tuesday blamed president obama's open door immigration policy for a surge in gangland crime that included a retaliation murder and an assault on an officer doing paperwork in his cruiser. quote, case by case, amnesty, backdoor amnesty, daca programs, the dream act were pushed through by executive
order, said frederick county sheriff, charles jenkins. quote, policy shifts by president obama weakened and ruined secure communities and did not allow action by i.c.e. when sheriffs and police departments ignored detainers, allowing criminals to be released back on the streets. in effect, criminal aliens should have been deported, have been allowed to remain and commit more serious crimes, becoming violent offend, unquote. he told the house judiciary committee. probing the criminal impact of illegals in the united states. he was joined by family members of victims of illegal immigrant crime. a surge ofing issue around the nation -- urging -- a surging issue around the nation as obama's policies allow more unauthorized aliens to leave jail and remain in the country. frederick is north of washington, d.c., but has become a haven for criminal
transnational gangs. especially in high schools. members of ms-13 and 18th street gangs have become influential in the schools and county. transnational alien gangs are are structured criminal enterprises involved in drug and human trafficking, crimes of violence over turf, retaliation, money laundering and other serious crimes. as these gangs are recruiting locally and increasing in number, so does the associated crime within communities, unquote, jenkins said. he gave details on the crimes by eminent -- immigrant gangs in his county. there are over 75 active, known, validated, transnational criminal gang members in frederick county. many more suspected of gang affiliation. we also believe that ms-13,
18th street alien gangs are recruiting locally in our schools, in the region and out of country. of the 52 validated criminal alien gang members identified nce 2008, 25 of the 52 or 4% were identified -- 48% were identified since late 2014. 18 of the 2005 or 72% of the gang members encountered since 2014 have been charged with felonies. seven of 11 or 64% of the criminal alien gang members encountered in 2015 were unaccompanied juveniles when they entered the u.s. and eventually located to frederick county, maryland. now they're adults committing erious felonies. crimes committed include five occurrences, attempted first
and second degree murder. armed robbery. first degree assault. home invasion. armed carjacking. kidnapping. use of a firearm in the commission of a violent felony, carrying concealed deadly weapons. in 2014 eight criminal aliens charged with rape and sexual assault of children age 5 to 14, with two of the girls impregnated. one of my deputies was the victim of an unprovoked physical attack, assault, by an ms-13 gang member, while sitting in his cruiser doing paperwork. the u.s. district court recently indicted a known alien gang member for involvement in 2013 ms-13 hired killing in frederick, medicare. the victim in the killing fled el salvador to live in frederick because of an ms-13 hit for him there. but the hit order carried to a
local ms-13 click, the victim was lured to a wooded area where he was shot in the head and stabbed to death. the growing alien gang problem has spread into one high school where fights and violence between ms-13 and 18th street are routine. and that goes back to this important point about this administration's urging and luring people into the united states illegally by talking about the amnesty, talking about legal status, and as has been made clear by the border patrol, when anyone in washington, whatever party, either house or senate, talk , ut legal status or amnesty it creates a surge across our
southern border. and having been there in the last few weeks, spending nights and days down there on the border, on the river, beside the river, and i do mean all hours of the day and night, you ee these things firsthand. you see little bitty children and the border patrol are told, they're here, they came naccompanied, there's no way these little children came unaccompanied across a river lowing that fast, that deep. some of them alleged to have come from central america, over 1,000 miles they journeyed unaccompanied? that's garbage. it's like border patrolmen have told me, one in particular, he
said, i speak -- i'm hispanic. i speak better spanish than most of them. and had they tell me 90% of the time, i came to escape gang violence, i'll hit them up, you macon vince some bringow of that, but -- you may convince some bringow of that but you and i know you paid a gang to bring you in to the united states. and he said 90% of the time their response is, well, that's true, but we were told to say we were fleeing gang violence. other border patrolmen have told me down there, there's not one inch of our southern border that isn't considered the jurisdiction of some drug cartel. some drug lord. and you cross within that sector, without getting permission or properly paying, making sure the drug lord or the drug cartel is satisfied with your payment, then you will be sought and found and
either killed or be forced to provide services until your debt is paid. that's why it's staggering when people down on the border, having come across illegally, are asked about how much they pay, it's not part of the required requests, but some of our border patrol really want to know, wheags the going rate here for this sector, for people like you, from the country you came from, what they charging you? you get the different answer, $5,000, $6,000, $7,000, $8,000, maybe $10,000 for a group. when the response comes back that, gee, there's no way you could have come -- i can see -- how in the world could you have come up with that much money? and any time the resulting answer is, well, they said i could work it off when i get to the u.s. city where i'm going. you know they're working,
they've agreed to work for a drug cartel, for a gang, for ms-13, 18th street, and it's not just along the texas border, as we've seen from frederick, maryland. it's all over the country. people have agreed to provide the services, as i've pointed out here before, border patrol says the drug cartels, the gangs in mexico, call us their logistics. because they know under this administration, if they just get somebody across the borderer, across the rio grande, get them across illegally, then we become their logistics and we ship them wherever they want to go. they tell us, we've got an address or i've got a family member here, a family there, or somebody that i've agreed to
take care of me, they don't say it, but it sounds like it could also mean where the drug cartel has told me, they gave me this address and this is where i'm supposed to go. they don't say, this is where the drug cartel told me to go. but when they have said the drug cartel is going to let me work it off, what does anyone expect? is it any wonder that so many of the crimes in america are being committed by people who have come into the country illegally? and we know that most people coming in illegally are not violent criminals. i got that. we have that. we understand that. but when people come into the country illegally, and by the way, for those that have not noticed, they're not in the shadows. i know there were a few in the shadows under the trees, because it got hot out there in front of the supreme court, but most were out in front of the supreme court, they're not in the shadows.
so people keep saying, we have to bring them out of the shadows. well, start looking. they're not in the shadows. they're out. and in fact, we had a group come to some offices here in the capitol. they're not in the shadows, they're coming right in the office. d demanding that we legalize those of them who have come in illegally. the problem is, and this is the the st problem, when brightest hope in the world as the on, which once was freest nation in the world, once was the freest nation in the history of the world, now international polls say we're not, but we've been the freest nation, but when the freest to apply s trying the law equally across the
the then we become like countries these poor, unfortunate individuals fled because their country did not apply the rule of law equally. depended on who you were, how much you could pay, what you could do for them. we become like the countries they had to flee and there's nowhere left for people holding out hope for one place in the world where they can come and be free. it's gone. i've had people even in congress say, oh, if it gets too bad, we just pack up and go to australia. when i told that to some australians in january, none of them smiled and they said, if something happens to the united states, freedom, china will
take us over instantly. ou won't have us to come to. if something happens to the united states. and we continue to damage ourselves the way europe has damaged itself, there's not going to be anyplace left to go. that's what the west africans told me three or four years ago, said, you've got to tell people in washington, you know, as thrilled as we were when you elected your first black president, we've seen you getting weaker and weaker. you're not standing up like you used to. and our own -- we know, we're christians, we're going to heaven when we die, but our only hope for life of peace in this world is if america's strong. and when we weaken the rule of law, when we have a president make millions and millions of exceptions to the law, we're on our way to becoming like the countries, people that came
here he will illegally, had to leave -- people that came here illegally had to leave. for those who say we need to follow the bible, i certainly believe that. and for individuals, there's no better place to start than with the golden rule, do unto others as would you have them do unto you. as part ou're acting of the government, and you refuse to do what the bible says, and that is show no partialality to those because hey're rich, show no partiality because someone's poor, unfortunate, you you a ply justice across the board. that is the ultimate good government. you provide justice, you see hat the rule of law is equally
enforced across the board. and again, this administration that's trying to stack the supreme court on its way out after setting a record for being found to be the most unconstitutional in the shortest time, this article rom today is entitled, obama administration unsure if iran spent $3 billion in new cash on terrorism. . and it's an article about the obama administration with the complicity of secretary state kerry making sure iran gets $100 billion to $150 billion and they can't tell us -- well, the article says, obama administration officials disclosed tuesday that iran has been granted access to about $3 billion in unfrozen assets in
the month since the nuclear agreement was implemented but it remains unclear to the administration if the islamic republic has spent it on money to fund its global terrorism enterprise. mr. speaker, having listened to the iranian leaders while this administration was saying, oh, yeah, we got to abide by this iranian deal, the iranian leaders were assuring their people, we're not abiding by anything that the united states tells us to do. we're still doing everything we intended to do. we're not going to be restrained by any agreement with the united states, and they announced -- i mean, how do people in this administration miss it? they announced in iran, we are going to be able to provide more
financial support once we get the $100 billion to $150 billion, more support for terrorist groups. hamas, hezbollah. they told us. so now the administration this week has said, gee, we can't be sure they didn't use some or all, who knows, this money on rrorism and they quote state department spokesman john kirby, quote, we don't know. e don't have a way, unquote. well, when an administration, like the leaders of iran, lie and lie and are the responsible -- responsible for providing for more terrorism, more death and destruction in the world than any other country, the largest supporter of terrorism in the
world, when they tell you they're going to take money you give them and spend it on terrorism, that may be the one thing you can count on them being honest about. .nd going back november, 2015 this story from john heyward talks about the state department's social media accounts that were hacked by iran. quote, the surge has led american officials to a stark conclusion for iran cyberespionage with the power it gives the iranians to jab at the united states and its neighbors without provoking military response is becoming a tool to seek the kind of influence that some hardliners in iran may have hoped its nuclear program would eventually provide, unquote,
"the new york times" reports. we have this report from four, five 015, short months ago -- four. iranian hackers infiltrated a small new york dam in 2013 in a previously undisclosed incident, according to "the wall street journal." this is an article by katy williams from "the hill" and this is december 21. investigators say the hackers didn't take control of the system but were probing its . fenses well, the white house knew about it. they knew about the intrusion into the new york system. so is it any wonder? people are wondering, huh could
people support donald trump -- people are wondering how could people support donald trump? new york got hacked by iran and this administration's done nothing about it but try to defend iran from having the money cut that they said they'll use for terrorism, and so is it any wonder new yorkers are thinking, well, a guy that says he's going to completely stop this type of activity with radical islamic groups, sure, of course people will vote for a person that will say that. here's an article from january, 2015. five ways iran is cheating on the interim nuclear deal. that was the interim deal. and it goes on and sets out how they've been cheating. here's an article from december 16 of 2015, iran's october missile test violated the united
nations ban. that was the conclusion of an expert panel, according to this reuters.com story by louis. says iran violated the united resolution saying they delivered a nuclear warhead, yet this administration didn't slow down rushing the $100 billion to $150 billion they had coming to iran. this article from katie, the white house is -- it's likely iran violated u.n. nuclear tests but they'll still uphold the nuclear agreement and she quotes from white house press secretary josh earnest that despite the likely violation, earnest stressed that the white house
believes the iranian regime will uphold its obligation to the recently made nuclear agreement. amazing because it turned out they already knew that iran had been hacking our government websites and our government internet. they had charges held up so that it wouldn't stop what we now know is an executive agreement cting like a treaty. they're still doing, as some of us said they had to, they bent so far backwards to get an agreement with the largest state supporter of terrorism in the iran toat once -- wants continue to violate, even taking our sailors prisoner, violating geneva convention rules on prisoners, humiliating the
prisoners. not only did this administration not send more navy forces to take back the navy sailors that were imprisoned, it gushed about how wonderful iran was to take arge of our sailors as the videos emerged mocking america as they treated our navy soldiers -- sailors as just trash. nd then we get this story. bradley clapper, u.s. considers easing the ban on dollars to help iran. this administration wants to turn around and give iran, the largest state supporter of terrorism, access to our dollars and apparently that would mean access to internet sites, bank
sites when they know they've been hacking us. they're trying to figure out ways to bring down the united states and now this administration wants to help them, to show how good of friends we can be. that's like trying to convince a bully on the playground that you'll keep giving him money because you're his dear friend. he'll keep taking your money but he never sees you as a friend and not only does he not see you as a friend, the more you give him the more contempt he has for you as a coward. this article today from carolyn may, conclusion, mother of daughter killed by illegal says his bail was less than it cost to bury my baby. the mother, recent college graduate who was killed by an
illegal immigrant, who later absconded after posting bail, offered emotional testimony before a house panel. michelle, mother of 21-year-old sarah, spoke of the devastation of losing her daughter at the hands of an illegal immigrant who killed her while street racing drunk. that's different from the story we talked about yesterday. mexia was able to flee when immigration and customs enforcement declined to detain him. he was able to post bail. quote, he spent four days in jail and is believed to have fled the country, unquote, michelle said. quote, he posted $5,000 bond, which was less than the cost it was to bury my daughter, sarah. because of the lack of controls, the police, immigration, u.s. marshals and law enforcement have little or no information on his whereabouts, unquote. she said, he was not a stranger to law enforcement and failed to
honor his legal obligations for non-- for minor traffic infractions prior to killing my daughter. now a failed local judicial system set his bail too low coupled with flawed obama administration policies have rewarded the illegal and punished my family and hampered law enforcement in their investigation. there are plenty of good reasons o wait for a different nominee for the supreme court. we won't even make them wait 10 years, like the democrats in the senate made my friends. won't make them wait four, five years, as senate democrats did my friends before they'd give them a confirmation. but as unconstitutional, setting records for unconstitutionality, such a short time, it bears us
being diligent when the administration is not. people's lives are at stake. they've already been lost. more's at stake. we got to stand up. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. members are reminded to refrain from engaging in personalities against members of the senate and to refrain from engaging in permits towards the president, including by repeating extreenyuss material that would be improper if spoken -- extraneous material that would be improper if spoken in the member's own words. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the chair recognizes the gentleman from california, mr. peters, for 30 minutes. mr. peters: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the subject of our special order. americans have seen a change in our economy firsthand and are
concerned about what it means for their place in the new economy. we can't stop the forces that are transforming our economy and our world, but we can and we must look to the future to find the solutions that adapt to this new economy. we can't live in the past. this means boosting the creation of high-quality jobs by lowering barriers for small businesses to succeed and investing in infrastructure and research. it also means giving americans the skills to work the jobs of the future that are being created. in march, 2015, the new democrat coalition released "winning the future," which outlines how we can grow our economy, preserve the american dream and make government work better for the people. the principles presented in the agenda and report represent ideas that anyone, democrat, republican, independent, can support. the recently released report consists of 200 legislative actions, including items for every one of our members.
more than 57% of those bills, 110 total, are bipartisan and more than 30 bills have advanced through a committee of the house or through the house as a whole. more than 20 items in the orp have become law or have been -- report have become law and this represents not just a plan but tangible progress. and today we will share what that means for growing the economy in every town and city in america and helping hardworking americans thrive in the changing global economy. federal funding for research and development has been on a downward trend for the past several decades. today the federal government spends almost 2/3 less on research and development than it did in 1965 as a portion of discretionary spending. the lack of funding has led to a $1.5 trillion investment deficit and a growing number of america's best young researchers are taking their talents to other industries and other
countries. we need to reinvest in our young researchers to remain globally competitive, and on that subject i want to yield now to my friend representative kilmer from the state of washington. mr. kilmer: i thank my good friend from san diego for yielding. the time was 7:28 p.m. when the soviet union launched sputnik 1. it was a wakeup call to the united states and it was perceived as a threat. and the reaction to that was a focus by our federal government on national research, on basic innovation o drive in nd the outcam was scientific break throughs and i point to the cell phone